i can´t wait to try this out! i´ve just started having this issue after owning the machine for a year or two and i´ve been searching for a good solution. i love the machine, but it´s been unusable for anything except b/w printing for about two months now.
I tried this today and I still have what you called "roller marks" when printing color only. None of the ribs inside the cover appeared to have built up toner. Any thoughts on how to get rid of these roller marks? Thanks!
I sanded down the areas with built up toner and the streaks are now more noticeable. I left off the drum cover off and it prints fine. Guess I´ll just leave the cover off from now on.
This is the solution I have been looking for. The first time I must not have sanded the cover enough, ´cause although streaks were reduced 95, there was still on e there. after sanding a little more streaks were gone and I was able to print my DVD case covers for my business again. I did do one thing differently. I added paper washers under the cover, on the top screws to add hieght. The washers were the ones you would find holding down a MotherBoard.
Thanks for you help.
This is great. I have been unhappy about the streaking problem for a long time and this did the trick.
However, I did not use a power sander. I just filed down the high spots and then went over all those areas with fine sand paper (on a block). It appears that things just needed to be smoothed out.
Take the lid off the drum and keep it off. that is the easiest fix. Or, clip the lid and just keep the small section with the handle, and use the two screws on each end. Make sure you sand down the ribs and rough edges that remain. This way you can at least have a handle to help you manage your printer. This is a pretty unsophisticated repair, and a major disappointment. Dell should offer a recall for this problem, and free replacement parts for owners of this printer â€“ whether the warranty is still active or not.
i have a void down the right side of the print about 1.5 inch? color or black.
They had me ship the printer back and they sent me a used printer.
Excellent posting. I was just about to order a new drum kit, as I figured that was the reason for the streaking. Good thing I came across this post. Saved me a bunch of money! Thanks!
Hey - thanks for the tip, did this and it fixed the streaks, now I just need to figure out the two dark lines and toner "dot" issue I have. Thanks again!
I´ll try this but also am loosing print on the right side of b/a and color printing as well as streeks on color. Any suggestions . I just put new drum in and streeking on color was there from the beginning woe the streeking happen right away, drum was remanufactured. Also can these printers still be purchased?
thanks for your post! have the same problem as you, not sure if I´m up to sanding down my drum cartridge yet but I might get there
Thanks, you´ve just made my weekend. I have been having this problem since I bought the printer from ebay (for cheap). With this fix I´m sure I´ll enjoy using it for the next couple of years.
I have same problem with Tony. The right sids of
the printout is truncated, disappeared. Not only
K,Y,C but also M. Its band is about 1 inch.
In this area, first color is dim, then disappeared. I replace the new drum, 4 new toner cartridges but it is not better.
Any help or advices are very appreciated.
Awesome - this worked for me. I had the exact same problem, followed your instructions, and the printer is like new again. Thanks!
Thanks so much for posting this. It worked for me with a 3000cn that was acting up. I ended up leaving off the two screws closest to the exposed end of the transfer belt and adding a couple of washers under the screws near the handle (as suggested on the dell forum). It was a bit difficult to wiggle back in the machine, but works wonderfully now.
We have the same printer and problem I´m working on now. Howeve, we also have a vertical void 1/8 in. thick on the whole page in only blue. I traced it to the blue developement roller, which has a corresponding void band of blue developer. I suspect lint, hair, etc., has gotten in the blue toner (reman) and clogged this area behind the doctor blade. Does anyone have a teardown diagram or know where I can get one for the developement section of this printer?
Thanks for taking the time to provide your great fix steps. I took the drum cover off, sanded it down with an orbital sander, washed, dried, and put it back on. It totally fixed the short smear lines shown horizontally across the page in your example. Thats been an annoying issue for almost 2 years. Unfortunately I still have soft faded vertical streaks that run top to bottom where it looks like the ink (regardless of color) is barely printing. One is 1/4" wide and runs exactly down the center of the paper. The others are narrower. This second issue appears to be something different than the drum cover rubbing the paper.
tried this out after replacing the drum unit did not fix the problem. Took 5 minutes and fixed a very longstanding and annoying problem! Great work.
Thanks for identifying a great solution to a problem I have experienced on two 3100 printers. I have kicked myself a hundred times for not sending the printers back when I first got them due to this issue. The solution solved 95 of the streaking. There is still one small point that I cannot solve even after repeated sanding. Will try adding a thin washer next time I open it up. as suggested by Brian Kernan below.
Thanks for the tip. I also find that if I turn on the printer about 30 minutes before I´m ready to use it, the printer warms up more and that also helps to alleviate the problem.
Just so everyone knows, the problem is a defection drum unit design. Dell replaced mine (along with many others) free of charge, and the problem completely went away. They may still be replacing them for free, check out the Dell forums. Cheers.
Jonathan, I had my drum "replaced" a couple of times by Dell and it never fixed the problem. Unless they have changed the way they are making the drum, there will be some that have the problem.
We are having the same problem that Tony and Sach has. It dissappears at the right. Can this be fixed by replacing the drum or does anyone know what can be done?
Thanks for the info. I was thinking I might have to replace the drum, but this little trick fixed my 3100cn good as new. Thanks for the post and instructions
My Dell 3100cn started exhibiting this issue after just 2000 pages. Thank you for sharing this information on how to fix the problem. Now it prints as good as new again!
Has much sanding is required? I took the drum apart a couple of times, sanded and re-assembled. The streaks got better but don´t go away completely. Now the streaks are more like dots. Does it require sanding away a significant amount of the ribs? Is the area of concern the flat portion?
Wow! Took the cover off and it works perfectly! There goes years of frustration! Thanks so much for the post!!!
Rather than sanding I put a few layers of (trimmed) Scotch tape along the edges to shim the cover a little higher. Worked great. Now I´m a hero to my boss.
Thank you so much for a simple answer. I bought my printer of Ebay for Â£51 - a real bargain - especially as it had only printed 3,600 pages from new. I had to sand down the front edge of the ribs quite severely before the smudging stopped, I also packed out the edges to raise them a little with some sticky tape and it is now perfect. Many thanks agin.
I´ve had this problem for a long time. Was so irritating I bought a Dell 1320c which I started using as my default printer. Not thinking, I ran a window envelope through the 1320 and the window melted. now machine doesn´t work. So I started using the 3100n again to complete a print job. The replace drum soon message came on (after less than 7k color
4k bw prints) - $170 part. Can´t decide to buy a new drum or new printer. 1320c on sale for $178. Samsung 315 on sale for $99. At least I now know how to fix streaking if I decide to replace 3100n drum. Anyone want to buy my 3100n? :-)
Bob, I have a way to fix your "replace drum cartridge" error as well for less than replacing the whole stinking drum.
There is a little RFID chip in the drum that identifies the drum cartridge. The drum automatically tells you to replace the drum after some number of prints. Normally, all you have to do is clean out the drum by taking the drum out and unscrewing the four screws on the end with the clear bulb looking thing and dumping out the excess toner that builds up. Sometimes that is all it takes, but normally after that all you have to do is buy a replacement RFID chip (it looks like a circle about the size of a nickle on the side of the drum.) You can buy them for about 15-20 bucks.
I have a link to buy them from Amazon at the top right of this page.
I´ve done this before and it worked like a charm.
This is how to fix the "Replace Drum Cartridge" Error on a 3100cn.
It might appear as a 091-422 error at first that says "Drum Cartridge Replace Soon" or as 091-935 Replace Drum Cart, Drum Full of Waste Toner
What I have found so far it that there are a couple of steps that you need to take. One is mechanical and easy to do. The other is electronic and I am still trying to figure it out.
The drum cartridge collects and stores all of the excess toner. It really does fill up. If you look on the sides of the cartridge, on the end that you insert into the printer first, you will notice two caps (one on each side) that are secured with one screw. They have a green arrow on them.
Open one and empty the toner (be careful there will be a lot). Close that side back up and repeat on the other side.
Now look at the middle of that same end of the cartridge. You will see a clear plastic "nipple" that looks something like a Christmas light. When the cartridge is full of toner, it pushes down an opaque piece that evidently blocks light and presumably informs the printer that it is full. There is a small hole in the end of the "nipple". Use a small paper clip and push it back up inside (softly, I didn't need to do this step; it went back up after I emptied the excess toner.).
If you are lucky, your toner was simply deactivated because it was full and you will now be able to use it again.
If not, it is the result of the "life chip" on the left side of the cartridge. You will see it as a round black plastic disk. Use the tip of a sharp pen knife and pop it out. It appears to be a passive RFID device with antenna. By the way, they are the same devices as are used in the ends of the toner cartridges but they are not programmed the same. This is what I am still trying to circumvent.
The quickest fix is to buy one on Amazon for about $15. Still cheaper than a new drum cartridge but it is the principle of the thing.
You can also purchase them from
. I bought one from them and it was dead on arrival. I emailed them and they sent a replacement and it worked like a charm.
I cannot stand the idea that a manufacturer can "decide" that we need to spend more money on consumables when the unit is perfectly fine!
I finally built the guts up and followed your directions. Worked! I had to keep going back and forth to Sand more and more but finally got it where I needed it Dell was trying to get me to buy another drum unit. lol Glad I found this post Thanks.
If you think there are 8 screws. you´re wrong -- those 2 extra middle ones hold on two small rollers. Wear rubber gloves and be extremely careful NOT to touch the roller fabric. I used 220, 400, and 1000 grit to sand. Remember to have ample lighting, a soft towel/carpet underneath, and wear a dust mask when sanding. I took a good deal off but still had some streaks. perhaps I bent the cover. It runs fine w/out the cover.
I took a lighter to the cover and put a ´bow´ in it such that its bent away from the belt. 3 minute fix with no sanding required. Worked like a charm.
It should be noted that you sand the tapered side of the panel, the side that has the arrows on it.
I spent a few hours sanding the other side with no luck and found out later it was the wrong spot! I didn´t have any toner on the cover though so it was hard to find the spot.
I´m shocked Dell has not fixed this issue before releasing the final printer.
I block sanded with 80, 220, and 400 grit sandpaper. No help. Shimmed the cover edges with 3 layers of 1/4 inch wide masking tape. Little help. I think I may just leave the cover off, since it prints beautifully without the cover.
I opted to leave the cover off. Works well, now. Thanks for the tips!
Whoever came up with this fix deserves a medal! Seriously, in less than four minutes, four years worth of high blood pressure issues magically disappeared. I took the drum cover off (really easy) and carefully slid the coverless drum back in the printer (also easy). It prints and feeds perfectly without the drum cover. Meantime, I see the numerous ribs on the underside of the lid and, yes, there are ever so slight areas of toner on portions of those ribs -- about where I´d expect them to be based on the nasty smearing I was getting. If I have time, I might try sanding it. But in the meantime, I´ve got a machine that prints perfectly. Finally. (And trust me, it beats shopping for a new printer). I feel sorry for Dell. This simple QA/QC issue with a few ridges of plastic really messed up the reputation of a decent machine.
Can anyone post pictures of the this cover repair process. Also, the rollers in my printer have a heavy coating of toner. Should they be cleaned to remove all toner?
My goodness -- the years of frustration -- the hours of dispair -- gone -- all gone! The cover is off. It´s in the trash. First streak-free prints, maybe ever. Bag the sanding. Toss the lid! GRATEFUL!
That is exactly what I did. I just tossed the cover and never looked back.
THANKS! I found this writeup on the DELL FORUMS (was it yours?). Worked like a charm! I sanded lightly first -- took care of MOST the problem. Then I sanded more, and the problem is gone. I had only 2500 prints in 5 years (mainly because the stupid thing was SOOO enfuriating). Now I´m set!!! SO HAPPY! It´s like having a brand new printer!
Kudos for having identified the lid to be the cause of the problem. The sanding exercise did not help but inserting spacers and discarding the 2 front screws did the trick (thanks to Brian B as well).
Tried this, but still had the white streak, so I sanded some more, but still had the streaks. Prints with the cover removed are streak free. I´ve sanded the tops of the grids until there are no more shinny surfaces left, is there any more quantatative way of know how much to sand?
I had the same problem, tried to open the drum unit, to clear the waste toner and arround the transfer. But after assembling it again, the printer starts to print almost without any colors, the prints are spreaded.may be the aasmeblage was wrong. If somebody could tell me how to assmeble again the transfer part of the drum unt, it will be hifhly appreciated.
Thank you so much for this. I took my cover off and sanded it, it fixed most of the streaking, however it did not completely fix it, even after 2 more sandings. So I just left the cover off. Now my printer works perfect! I also filled up all the empty toners with refill toner and turned on non-dell toner. Fixed up what could have been a potentially $100 drum and $80-100 in toner for free.
Thanks for the post! This applies to my second hand Dell 3000cn also. I tried sanding down the cover, but I think I made things worse by making the new "high points" flatter and bigger. Since it´s for home use only, I left the cover off and the blotches are gone!
This fix worked for me. Have had this printer sitting for years. Now I finally have a color laser!
I removed the drum unit to clean the wiper blade and remove excess toner after replacing and reinstalling the drum unit I get an error message "restart printer" any advice would be appreciated
Nice catch on the 6 screws, not 8! I had to go back and find the little rollers and reattach them.
I´m leaving the cover off, based on my other two drum units not showing any rib contact - I think sanding will be futile.
Finally, for those of you who say one edge of your printout is missing, this seems to be a different but related problem to the streaking.
What´s happened appears to be that the optical drum (the blue-green thing visible at the bottom of the drum) has been damaged by long-term streaking. You can run a fingernail over a couple of mine and feel the groove cut in it.
Unless someone knows a source for replacement optical drums, that drum unit is trash. I´m hoping now that I´ve taken a cover off of a new one, the optical won´t get prematurely destroyed again.
I´ll chip my new one w/the RFID chip if the optical will just last long enough to make that worthwhile!
Brilliant! Printer now works perfectly, no lines, streaks, etc. Went from the junk pile to being my go to printer
I did it the easy way. I snipped the screw stubs in the front of the cover with wire clippers. And used double sided mounting tape. On the sides to the middle screws and left the two front screws off the front. None of that sanding crap needed. Worked perfect.
Wow, this looks awesome! So well presented, and spot-on with regards to my personal issue especially as shown in your photo. Can´t wait to try. This is what makes the net so great! Many thanks!
You People are awesome. Re: comment 32-33, I cleaned out the drum but I was still getting the "replace drumcart-drum full of waste toner" nonsense, so I just ordered the chip. I hope this will fix the problem. THANK YOU!
Thanks a lot for your article. After 8 years I have finally can finally print color without streaks on my Dell 3000CN printer. In my case to solve the problem in addition to the sanding I needed to rechape the cover a little bit. I noticed it was bulging slightly towards the developer roller. To fix this I put the cover top down on two thick books on the edges and heated it with a hairdryer. After pressing it down in the middle I cooled it again with the hairdryer blowing cold air. This resulted in a slight bulge towards the outside of the cover but after that no streaking any more on my prints.
Thanks againg for your post.
See Original Article:
"Fix Your Dell 3100cn Streaking Issue"